Blog: The Doncaster group's Big Night Out

A group of people sitting around a restaurant table, looking at the camera and smiling
Vee (right) and the Doncaster Stammering Association

Vee, our Communities & Campaigns Manager, travelled up to Doncaster last week for an evening with a magical surprise in store, put on by the Doncaster Stammering Association. 

I arrived at the bar of the Earl of Doncaster, a quirky hotel with a Gatsby-themed allure, and was greeted by smiling faces from everyone at the Doncaster Stammering Association (DSA). This community, established ages ago, has become an institution in the stammering world and a safe space for many to connect, share laughs and support each another, and they had invited me to their 'Big Night Out' event.

Bob Adams, the group's organiser, introduced me to everyone and I felt welcome in an instant. As the Communities Manager it means a lot to me when I get a chance to speak to the people I support all over the UK. 

As the evening started to unfold, Bob had a trick up his sleeve. He had invited a friend, a magician named Tom, who mesmerised everyone with his incredible illusions. One trick, in particular, left me utterly flabbergasted. When Tom asked me for a ring, I thought 'Why not?' and handed him one from my index finger. He made a couple jokes about stealing it (of course!) and put it in his pocket. When it reappeared, it was attached to his keyring (alongside his car keys). 

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A group of people smiling for the camera
The Doncaster Stammering Association's 'Big Night Out', with Bob Adams (kneeling right) next to magician Tom (Feb '24)

Another mind-boggling feat involved Dean, one of STAMMA's new trustees and dear friend of the DSA. He was asked to think of a random country, google-search it and show everyone. Tom used my iPhone for the trick and I was confused how he managed to unlock it without knowing my pin. Then, Tom made people look up his profile on Instagram and what should appear in the description? It was only the revelation of what Dean had thought about: "I will be meeting Bob tonight at a stammering support group meeting, and his friend Dean will be thinking about Iceland while enjoying the show," he declared. I just couldn't believe it!

Following the magical performance, we moved to the restaurant for a delicious dinner, where I enjoyed a liver paté and my first-ever taste of cottage pie (a departure from the familiar shepherd's pie!). The conversation flowed seamlessly between discussions about stammering, activities at our upcoming STAMMAFest conference (a cheeky plug for tickets included), but not only that — we passionately discussed personal preferences for tea brands and the joys of walking, particularly with Dean, the co-founder of STAMMA Striders (another cheeky plug!). Plus, I got to ask everyone about their favourite coffee shop in Doncaster; more for personal information, but it was also a good opportunity to plug our current stammering in coffee shops campaign (stay tuned)!

The evening gave me an insight into the dynamics of the support group meetings up in Doncaster, showcasing the genuine connections formed within the community. People shared what they valued most about the group and why they chose to attend meetings. It was evident that the DSA is more than just a support group; it's a tight-knit family, bonded together by shared experiences and a common understanding. They welcome newcomers too, so if you fancy joining in, check out their details.

Finally, to Bob, I really enjoyed my time with the group and in Doncaster. Thank you for extending the invitation to me and for having me! It's been truly magical.

If you want to connect with others who stammer, email me at or go to Communities and Groups.

Two women in running outfits holding flags and looking at the camera
Tayo & Bhupinder
A speaker on stage at STAMMAFest 2023

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